Manchester United's Vidic focused on Adebayor and Van Persie threat
London - Individual battles are sure to be key to the outcome of Wednesday's Champions League semi-final, first-leg clash between Manchester United and Arsenal at Old Trafford, and United defender Nemanja Vidic knows he will be in for a tough time against Arsenal's front line. The Serbia defender has been a vital cog in United's march toward multiple honours this season and the defending champions will need him to be at his best to quell an Arsenal side that has arguably the best in England over the past two months.
Vidic will have his hands full against Emmanuel Adebayor and Robin van Persie but he said he was looking forward to the challenge.
"Adebayor and Van Persie are very difficult forwards to play against," Vidic said.
"They are great players, they have speed and an eye for a goal. We need to concentrate fully for 90 minutes if we are to stop them."
With Cesc Fabregas having scored twice at the weekend, Arsenal have started to score goals from midfield again and though Andrey Arshavin is not playing because he is cup-tied, they offer more of a threat than just their front pair.
"Arsenal have always been a good team with quality players," Vidic said. "We know that and respect that, and they are on good form at the moment - they have started scoring goals."
Adebayor, meanwhile, said Vidic will be a difficult opponent for both him and Van Persie.
"Vidic is a very good player, he knows how to play against strikers," the Togo striker said.
"He's very strong and he's ready to give his life away for Manchester United. For me, he's one of the toughest defenders - he prevents a lot of goals. He scores important goals for his club too."
Arsenal have been excelling in recent weeks despite a series of injury problems, with Kieran Gibbs filling in well at full back, to the extend that Kolo Toure, the centre-back, believes he should play against United.
"Let Gibbs play," he said. "He is a good player and very intelligent. He came in at a really difficult time when we play the big teams and I think he has showed good character and I am really happy for what he has done for the club.
"It's always really difficult when you are young and you come in to play against the big players. I think he is going to perform very well on Wednesday."
Toure said the combined threat of Cristiano Ronaldo, Wayne Rooney, Carlos Tevez and Dimitar Berbatov meant that Arsenal had to be on their guard for every minute of the 90.
"Ronaldo is a really good player," he said. "But if we are focused and defend together then nobody can beat us." (dpa)